Education Development in India: Key indicators- Gross Enrollment Ratio, Primary Enrollment Ratio, Youth Literacy Rate

Education Development in India

Key Facts and Statistics

  • The essence of Human Resource Development is education, which plays a significant and remedial role in balancing the socio-economic fabric of the society. An all-round development of our citizens can be achieved by building strong foundations in education. Education is a unique investment in the present, bearing invaluable benefits in the future.
  • The overall increase in enrolment in primary education during the period 2000-01 to 2013-14 was 18.6 million while the overall increase in enrolment of boys and girls respectively was 4.6 million and 14.0 million during this period.
  • The enrolment in primary education reached the highest level in 2011-12 (137.1 million) and then declined to 134.8 million in 2012-13 and to 132.4 million in 2013-14.
  • Between 2011-12 and 2013-14, the total enrolment in primary education decreased by 4.7 million, with the enrolment of girls and boys decreasing by 2.5 million and 2.2 million respectively.
  • One of the reasons for the decline in enrolment in primary education is the declining child population age 0-6 years. The child population in the age group 0-6 years has declined by 5.05 million between 2001 and 2011 (Census of India, 2001 & 2011).

Indicators of Education Development

The Gross Enrolment ratio is defined as total number of students enrolled in a given level of education, regardless of age.

  • It is expressed as percentage of the official school age population relative to the population of the age group which officially corresponds to the given level of education.
  • A higher GER indicates higher degree of participation. A GER value approaching 100% or more indicated that a country is able to accommodate all of its school age population.
  • The GER in primary education increased from 95.7 per cent in 2000-01 to 116.0 per cent in 2010-11 and then declined to 101.4 per cent in 2013-14.
  • The overall increase in gross enrolment ratio in primary education during the period 2000-01 to 2013-14 was 5.7 percentage points (from 95.7 per cent in to 101.4 per cent).
  • The GER for boys declined by 4.7 percentage points, while the GER for girls increased by 16.8 percentage points during this period.

Net Primary Enrolment Ratio

  • Net primary enrolment ratio is the ratio of the number of children of official school age (as defined by the national education system) who are enrolled in primary school to the total population of children of official school age.
  • Based on the available data, the Net Enrolment Rate (NER) in primary education (age 6-10 years) was estimated at 84.5 per cent in 2005-06 (U-DISE).
  • The NER has increased to 8.08 per cent in 2013-141. The NER was higher for girls (89.26 per cent) than that for boys (87.2 per cent).

Youth Literacy Rate

  • Literacy rate of 15–24 year olds, or the youth literacy rate, is the percentage of the population 15–24 years old who can both read and write with understanding a short simple statement on everyday life.
  • In India, a person aged 7 years and above who can both read and write with understanding in any language has been taken as literate. It is not necessary for a person to have received any formal education or passed any minimum educational standard for being treated as literate.
  • The literacy rate for population in the age group 15-24 years has shown an upward trend both in rural and urban areas and for females as well as males.
  • The youth literacy rate has increased from 61.9% to 86.14% during the period 1991-2011 and the trend shows India is likely to reach 93.38% which is very near to the target of 100% youth literacy by 2015.
  • At national level, the male and female youth literacy rate is likely to be at 94.81% and 92.47%.


Himanshu Arora
Doctoral Scholar in Economics & Senior Research Fellow, CDS, Jawaharlal Nehru University
User Avatar

By B2B

Revisiting the Basics

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments


Join us across Social Media platforms.

💥Mentorship New Batch Launch
💥Mentorship New Batch Launch